A car rally was held in the national capital on February 3, 2017 to protest against the atrocities on animals and the illegal animal trade taking place at the Bangladesh border via Bihar and West Bengal. Organized by Dhyan Foundation along with People For Animals (PFA), the rally saw hordes of people, including working professionals and school children, in at least 500 cars decorated with banners and our national flag.
“United Humans Against Atrocities on Animals” was the theme of the rally which began from Kasturba Gandhi Marg and made its first pitstop at the office of the Resident Commissioner for West Bengal at Baba Kharak Singh Marg, moving on to Bihar Bhawan in Chanakyapuri. “Mafia-Police nexus, Bandh Karo Bandh Kkaro” read one of the banners and the slogan was raised by the large crowd in unison outside their vehicles while protesting outside the West Bengal Resident Commissioner’s office.
When asked about the photographs of slaughtered camels and cattle on the banners stuck to the cars, former Miss India-Universe Nikita Anand, spokesperson of Dhyan Foundation, said, “Camels and cattle both are sold for meat – yes, camels as well and all illegal of course! We have faced a lot of hardship in saving camels and cows in the states of Bihar, Rajasthan and West Bengal. The growing police-mafia nexus cost us animal and human lives and the mafia used the money to fund terror. Some policemen and administration people are of great help but majority do not want to enforce the law of the land, and anybody can guess the reason. Our volunteers have no security and are constantly under threat.”
Animal trafficking and terrorism are seldom spoken in the same breath but maybe that is reason why illegal animal trafficking is a flourishing trade across Indian borders. “Funds generated through animal trafficking are all unaccounted. There has been a clamp down on black money since the announcement of demonetisation drive but there has been no fall in the expansive animal trade. Now, instead of cash, arms and drugs are received as compensation. Maximum numbers of camels are caught near the Bangladesh and Pakistan borders. Why? This is a national issue concerning the security of the country,” said Kaushik of Gau Gyan Foundation.
“Recently, 16 camels were rescued 10 km short of the Pakistan border, it’s clear we are supplying camel meat to the Pakistan army and terrorists,” said socialite and animal activist Poonam Kapoor. “Thanks to police inaction, lakhs of camels and cows have already been slaughtered in and around the Bangladesh border. One camel costs Rs 1 lakh, so you can imagine the money generated. Here, let me give the example of Kishanganj in Bihar, where 61 camels were rescued near Bangladesh border two months ago but the judge is sitting on the case and not allowing the camels to return to their natural habitat in Rajasthan. Three have already died in this delay – Why? It is an organized mafia generating black money, and a threat to India and this is why we are carrying out this rally and protesting,” said Kapoor, who spent last two months fighting a legal battle for rescued camels in Kishanganj, Bihar. “Honorable Prime Minister has taken path breaking steps against black money to curtail terrorism, I request him to go to the root of this evil, which is cattle and camel smuggling into Bangladesh. It generates trillions in black money, guns come in via these routes, funds terrorism, and these are well known facts. This evil originates pan India and eradicating it will not slow, but put an end to black money and terrorism” said Yogi Ashwini, Guiding Light of Dhyan Foundation.
The car rally was organized outside West Bengal House and Bihar Bhawan to push authorities to enforce the law in their states and safeguard animals.